My MMA fandom has wained slightly in recent months.
I still catch all the pay-per-views and check in on the latest news but I have missed the odd Fuel show and wouldn't be able to pick the recent TUF washouts from the general nobodies on the undercards.
It's nothing to do with steroids in MMA (though the conversation on this topic might have partially caused it) or the "Doez the UFC run two manny showz?" argument that gets brought up all the time, or even Chael Sonnen jumping the queue of three guys that were all promised title shots and haven't actually lossed yet - I actually find that pretty funny. I think it was just a case of simply being jaded from watching it incessantly for the past however many years. I needed a holiday from my hobby, which sounds pretty pathetic really.
Anyway, my excitement levels were renewed in the most unlikely of places. A GSP main event. Which is a strange thing to come out of my mouth.
It's not strange because I hate GSP or anything like that. I have no problem with him. He's very talented and skilled and you have to respect that. It's just that watching a French-Canadian in bike shorts completely dominating a one-eyed man with a jab just ain't my thing. Sure it takes skill to beat Jake Shields with one eye or dominate any top welterweight for five rounds without shifting to second gear but it just ain't my bag.
So why then is a GSP main event rekindling my interest in MMA?
Simple. Carlos Condit.
Not the running man you say? Not the guy who single handedly made a Nick Diaz fight boring?
The very same, sir.
Was I pissed when Diaz/Condit didn't turn into a real-life version of Looney Tunes fight? Shit yes I was. Making that fight not exciting was like how Jon Favreau made a movie called Cowboys and Aliens unexciting.
I'm not going to say that fight was an anomaly because it probably wasn't. For all his badassishness (not a word) Condit does have it in him to realise what the best avenue for victory is. And that avenue might be a boring one. And AMAZINGLY in this instance the best avenue to victory was not to sit there and eat Nick Diaz's Fight Metric punch stats record to the face for 25 minutes that 99% of the people that didn't like that fight wanted to see.
So why Condit? Well to put it simply, Condit will not go quietly into the night.
I have 100% faith that if GSP starts to get his grind on, that Condit isn't just going to sit there and eat the odd elbow to the face for twenty five minutes. He's not going to eat jabs for twenty five minutes and not change things up or go along with any plan GSP has devised so that his UFC Undisputed head damage indicator doesn't go the slightest shade of pink.
Carlos Condit is the kind of guy that if he is being sat on and slightly pounded on will give up his back purely to create a scramble. Or will throw some dumb shit on the feet just to make the other guy open up a bit. In short he is going to do exactly what he needs to do to win the fight. Which in this case is to make GSP open up.
And that's where this fight begins to once again, I told myself I wouldn't say arouse, but AROUSE my interest in MMA.
Because GSP in any other gear is a force of nature to behold and against Carlos "The Honey Badger" Condit that should prove to be, as the scientists say, happy go lucky fun times.
Remember angry, free-wheeling GSP? The one that broke Sean Sherk's face, scrambled Matt Hughes brains and tried to find the spot on Matt Serra's body that where you if kneed it hard enough it would explode?
That GSP still exists he just needs some coaxing, and if Condit wants to win this fight he is going to have to give GSP chances to finish this fight so that he can finish him.
That's my opinion anyway and this is another.
This fight is so much better than the GSP/Nick Diaz fight. Nick Diaz would, I won't say happily as he never is really happy, grumpily sit on his back and play guard against a defense-minded GSP for five rounds. Simply because he would be able to call GSP a bitch after the fight and 90% of the MMA world would agree with him. Just because GSP is slightly angry at Diaz's comments won't change GSP's desire to not ever lose again at any sport again ever or raise Diaz's fight IQ to double digits.
Condit will force GSP to open up, to his own detriment if need be.
Condit will make GSP fight.